Code Section Group

Business and Professions Code - BPC

DIVISION 2. HEALING ARTS [500 - 4999.129]

  ( Division 2 enacted by Stats. 1937, Ch. 399. )

CHAPTER 5.45. Nonresident Contact Lens Sellers [2546 - 2546.10]
  ( Chapter 5.45 added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 853, Sec. 1. )

2546.
  

This act may be cited as the “Nonresident Contact Lens Seller Registration Act.”

(Added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 853, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1996.)

2546.1.
  

(a) On and after January 1, 1997, no person located outside California shall ship, mail, or deliver in any manner, contact lenses at retail to a patient at a California address unless registered with the Division of Licensing of the Medical Board of California.

(b) With regard to any person subject to registration pursuant to this section, only replacement contact lenses provided pursuant to a valid prescription as described in Section 2546.6 may be shipped, mailed, or delivered directly to a patient.

(Added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 853, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1996.)

2546.2.
  

All references in this chapter to the division shall mean the State Board of Optometry.

(Amended by Stats. 2015, Ch. 405, Sec. 3. Effective January 1, 2016.)

2546.3.
  

The division may adopt, amend, or repeal any rules and regulations that are reasonably necessary to carry out this chapter.

(Added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 853, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1996.)

2546.4.
  

Application for registration as a nonresident contact lens seller shall be made on forms prescribed by the division, accompanied by the fee prescribed by this chapter, and shall bear the signature of the individual, or individuals if a copartnership, or the president or secretary if a corporation, and shall contain the name under which the person proposes to do business, location of the business, and the designation of an agent for service of process in California. The board shall be notified within 30 days of any change of name, location of business, corporate officer, or agent of service.

(Added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 853, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1996.)

2546.5.
  

In order to obtain and maintain registration, a nonresident contact lens seller shall:

(a) Be in good standing and either registered or otherwise authorized in the state in which the selling facility is located and from which the contact lenses are sold.

(b) Comply with all directions and requests for information made by the board as authorized under this chapter.

(c) Maintain records of contact lenses shipped, mailed, or delivered to patients in California for a period of at least three years.

(d) Provide a toll-free telephone service for responding to patient questions and complaints during the applicant’s regular hours of operation, but in no event less than six days per week and 40 hours per week. The toll-free number shall be included in literature provided with each mailed contact lens prescription. All questions relating to eye care for the lens prescribed shall be referred back to the contact lens prescriber.

(e) Provide the following or a substantially equivalent written notification to the patient whenever contact lenses are supplied:


WARNING: IF YOU ARE HAVING ANY UNEXPLAINED EYE DISCOMFORT, WATERING, VISION CHANGE, OR REDNESS, REMOVE YOUR LENSES IMMEDIATELY AND CONSULT YOUR EYE CARE PRACTITIONER BEFORE WEARING YOUR LENSES AGAIN.


(f) Disclose in any price advertisement any required membership fees, enrollment fees, and indicate that shipping costs may apply unless the advertisement specifically and clearly states otherwise.

(g) Provide a toll-free telephone number, facsimile line, and electronic mail address that are dedicated to prescribers and their authorized agents for the purposes of confirmation of contact lens prescriptions. These numbers, along with an electronic mail address, shall be included in any communication with the prescriber when requesting confirmation of a contact lens prescription.

(h) It shall be considered a deceptive marketing practice for any nonresident contact lens seller to publish or cause to be published any advertisement or sales presentation relating to contact lenses representing that contact lenses may be obtained without confirmation of a valid prescription.

(Amended by Stats. 2002, Ch. 814, Sec. 4. Effective January 1, 2003.)

2546.6.
  

(a) Contact lenses may be sold only upon receipt of a written prescription or a copy of a written prescription and may be sold in quantities consistent with the prescription’s established expiration date and the standard packaging of the manufacturer or vendor. If the written prescription or a copy of it is not available to the seller, the seller shall confirm the prescription by direct communication with the prescriber or his or her authorized agent prior to selling, shipping, mailing, or delivering any lens, and maintain a record of the communication. A prescription shall be deemed confirmed upon the occurrence of one of the following:

(1) The prescriber or the prescriber’s agent confirms the prescription by communication with the seller.

(2) The prescriber fails to communicate with the seller by 2 p.m. of the next business day after the seller requests confirmation, or the prescriber fails to communicate with the seller by the next business day on or before the same time of day that the seller requested confirmation, whichever is sooner. For purposes of this paragraph, “business day” means each day except a Sunday or a federal holiday.

(b) If a prescriber communicates with a seller before the time period described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) elapses and informs the seller that the contact lens prescription is invalid, the seller shall not fill the prescription. The prescriber shall specify in the communication with the seller the basis for invalidating the prescription.

(c) A seller shall not alter any of the specifications of a contact lens prescription other than the color or substitute a different manufacturer, brand, or other physical property of the lens. Notwithstanding the provisions of this subdivision, if the contact lens is manufactured by a company, but sold under multiple private labels by that same company to individual providers, the seller may fill the prescription with a contact lens manufactured by that company if the contact lens prescription and the related parameters are not substituted, changed, or altered for a different manufacturer or brand.

(Amended by Stats. 2002, Ch. 814, Sec. 5. Effective January 1, 2003.)

2546.7.
  

(a) A certificate may be denied, suspended, revoked, or otherwise subjected to discipline for any of the following:

(1) Incompetence, gross negligence, or repeated similar negligent acts performed by the registrant or any employee of the registrant.

(2) An act of dishonesty or fraud.

(3) Committing any act or being convicted of a crime constituting grounds for denial of licensure or registration under Section 480.

(4) Any violation of Section 2546.5 or 2546.6.

(b) The proceedings shall be conducted in accordance with Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code, and the division shall have all powers granted therein.

(Added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 853, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1996.)

2546.8.
  

Every registration issued to a nonresident contact lens seller shall expire 24 months after the initial date of issuance. To renew an unexpired registration, the registrant shall, before the time at which the license would otherwise expire, apply for renewal on a form prescribed by the division, and pay the renewal fee prescribed by this chapter.

(Added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 853, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1996.)

2546.9.
  

The amount of fees prescribed in connection with the registration of nonresident contact lens sellers is that established by the following schedule:

(a) The application fee for a nonresident contact lens seller shall be a minimum of one hundred fifty dollars ($150) and shall not exceed two hundred dollars ($200).

(b) The initial registration fee shall be a minimum of two hundred dollars ($200) and shall not exceed three hundred dollars ($300).

(c) The renewal fee shall be a minimum of two hundred dollars ($200) and shall not exceed three hundred dollars ($300).

(d) The delinquency fee shall be a minimum of fifty dollars ($50) and shall not exceed seventy-five dollars ($75).

(e) The fee for replacement of a lost, stolen, or destroyed registration shall be twenty-five dollars ($25).

(f) The State Board of Optometry may periodically revise and fix by regulation the fees specified in subdivisions (a), (b), (c), and (d), and these revised fees shall not exceed the reasonable regulatory cost.

(g) The fees collected pursuant to this chapter shall be deposited in the Dispensing Opticians Fund, and shall be available, upon appropriation, to the State Board of Optometry for the purposes of this chapter.

(Repealed and added by Stats. 2016, Ch. 799, Sec. 5. Effective January 1, 2017.)

2546.10.
  

(a) Any person who violates any of the provisions of this chapter shall be subject to a fine of not less than one thousand dollars ($1,000) nor more than two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500) per violation. The fines collected pursuant to this section shall be available upon appropriation to the Medical Board of California for the purposes of administration and enforcement.

(b) The Medical Board of California shall adopt regulations implementing this section and shall consider the following factors, including, but not limited to, applicable enforcement penalties, prior conduct, gravity of the offense, and the manner in which complaints will be processed.

(c) The proceedings under this section shall be conducted in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code.

(Added by Stats. 2002, Ch. 814, Sec. 6. Effective January 1, 2003.)

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